View more on these topics

Financial brands condemned as walking dead

HSBC was still ranked as number one in Brand Finance/The Banker magazine’s Top 500 global financial brands in 2009 but its brand value fell by more than 40% in a year to $25.4bn.

According to Brand Finance, HSBC benefited from being a global brand. Its position as the world’s local bank buffered its exposure to the credit crisis, spreading risk both globally and across revenue streams.

Not so fortunate were Barclays – down from 11th in 2008 to 14th this year, NatWest – down from 20th to 81st, the Royal Bank of Scotland – 26th to 41st, Lloyds TSB – 29th to 39th, Halifax – 40th to 78th, Bank of Scotland – 59th to 95th and Abbey – down from 93rd to 125th.

The latest league table was published in early February, ahead of the most recent turmoil in the market, so falls from grace could have been even worse. Even so, the total fall in the Top 500’s brand value was 32%, while 209 of the brands in last year’s study dropped off the most recent list.

Notable exits include bailed out Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, Lehman Brothers and Bear Stearns, leading David Haigh, chief executive of Brand Finance, to conclude: “Many of the best known world brands died in 2008. Others are walking dead, awaiting a silver bullet. Governments hold the gun.”


Available mortgage schemes drop 85% year-on-year

The number of live mortgage schemes on Mortgage Brain dropped by almost 20% in February, a fall of over 85% compared to last year, the sourcing system’s monthly product number and analysis data.

Giving meaning to equity release

Goldsmith Williams is one of the founding members of the Equity Release Solicitors’ Alliance, a body recently created to raise standards in the equity release market.

Don’t forget your high-end clients

On speaking to industry contacts it is clear, and not that surprising, that an air of pessimism exists in the mortgage market.

Trade bodies want your response to FSA fee plan

The Association of Independent Financial Advisers and the Association of Mortgage Intermediaries last week issued a joint statement calling for members to respond to the Financial Services Authority’s fee proposals.

Retire, retirement, calculator

Defined benefit schemes: Part 2

Justin Corliss, business development manager In defined benefit (DB) schemes part 1, we looked at recent guidance aimed at DB scheme trustees and sponsors. In part 2 we will look at guidance available to pension transfer specialists (PTS). In the first instance, PTS should familiarise themselves with COBS 19. All guidance below is designed to […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up